Eastern Worm Snake
Search the Collections
Eastern Worm Snake
Eastern Worm Snake
Hatchlings are very small (here photographed with a U.S. dime).
Eastern Worm Snake

Online Guide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of Connecticut

Eastern Worm Snake - Carphophis amoenis


This is among the smallest species of snake in Connecticut, measuring only 7.5 to 11 inches (19 to 28 cm) in length. Worm snakes are generally brown with smooth scales. One of the most interesting characters of the species is that the snake has a sharp, pointy tail that it uses as a defensive weapon when captured. Although the defense is more annoying than painful to the human hand, it must be quite a different story for a small predatory mammal that feels this tail poking it in the eyes or nose.



Lays small clutches of eggs, often only 2. The eggs are typically quite large relative to the body size of the adult.


Found mostly under rotting wood in mixed hardwood forest or forest edge. Prefers moist soil over dry soil. Usually found in the same place as northern ringneck snake and the redback salamander.



Eats a variety of invertebrates, including earthworms and termites.



From central Massachusetts south to the Savannah River, west to northeastern Alabama. The distribution mostly follows the Appalachian Mountains in a northeastern pattern connecting Alabama to New England. It can be found throughout Connecticut.



Not federally protected.



Conant, R. and J.T. Collins. 1991. A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians: Eastern/Central North America. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. 450 pp.

Klemens, M.W. 1993. Amphibians and Reptiles of Connecticut and Adjacent Regions. Hartford, CT: State Geological and Natural History Survey of Connecticut Bulletin 112. 318 pp.



Text by Gregory J. Watkins-Colwell.
Photograph (top) © Gregory J. Watkins-Colwell. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
Photographs (bottom) © Twan Leenders. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
Animals featured on this page are from unknown localities.